By Dominic McGrath, PA
Green Party leader Eamon Ryan has said that the Government’s latest plan for tackling climate change will be published in the first week of October.
Speaking at the start of his party’s think-in in Dundrum in south Dublin, Mr Ryan said that the party would now build on the successes of the first year in Government.
“It’s like the first act. The second act now is delivering the change our legislation allows for,” he told reporters.
Mr Ryan also promised that Green Party junior agriculture minister Pippa Hackett would be “changing every single farm in this country, because we have the carbon budget, we also have the climate action plan coming, and the common agricultural policy reform”.
He said that the Climate Advisory Council would report back on Ireland’s carbon budgets in the next two weeks, while the review of the National Development Plan would be complete by the final week of September.
The Government has committed to legally binding targets on emissions through the use of five-year carbon budgets.
“They’re all connected,” Mr Ryan said.
He said it was always going to be “step by step”. But he promised: “It will all be delivered.”
“We can’t do it all top-down, but we will provide the funding. It is there, that is clear,” he said.
Mr Ryan said that his party will be discussing the new Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) during the think-in, as well as a new National Biodiversity Action Plan.
He said his party has a “vision” for addressing the decline in species and habitats.
He acknowledged that many achievements on the environment and climate would require the support of local politicians.
“It’s practical changes on the ground, particularly through local authorities, are going to be key in the reallocation of space, in the prioritisation of safe travel,” he said.
The Green Party think-in comes as Fine Gael holds a parliamentary party meeting in Trim in Co Meath. Fianna Fáil held a think-in in Cavan last week.